Flying at Night

Discussion in 'Mavic Pro Discussions' started by Chris_Toronto, Nov 15, 2016.

  1. Chris_Toronto

    Chris_Toronto Well-Known Member

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    The other evening I took out my Mavic and simply took it off and then went to about 8 feet above the ground. It was quite dark, not pitch black, and there was some wind. I had about 12 satellites reported but I am quite sure that it was too dark for the VPS to be of any help. The Mavic could not hold a steady hover - it was drifting about 4 or 5 feet from the intended hover point and the elevation was fluctuating from about 2 feet to about 10 feet above the ground.

    Would you consider this to be expected behavior due to a combination of low light and the presence of wind?

    Thanks.
     
  2. ThreeGs

    ThreeGs Well-Known Member

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    Were you flying near any LARGE metal structures or electrical fields that could have been messing with the GPS signal?
     
  3. Chris_Toronto

    Chris_Toronto Well-Known Member

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    No, definitely not.
     
  4. Chris_Toronto

    Chris_Toronto Well-Known Member

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    Now, that I think about it, it asked me to calibrate the compass before that flight, which I did without incident. Not sure if that had anything to do with it. I haven't flown it since.
     
  5. garaobriain

    garaobriain Well-Known Member

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    Haven't got mine yet but night flying looks great from the videos I've seen on YouTube. Take off from a well lit area then it has a good home point reference. GPS flying should be just the same as daytime I guess. Keep flying though!


    Sent from my iPad using MavicPilots
     
  6. kmaluo

    kmaluo Well-Known Member

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    Look for the compass calibration guide posted by Msinger. You should only have to calibrate your Mavic once. Once you have a good calibration, even if it prompts you, just move to a different spot instead of getting a bad calibration. If I can't move, I'll sometimes still take off and once I clear whatever is creating the interference on the ground, the erroroneous reading goes away.
     
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  7. mnobes.12

    mnobes.12 Active Member

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    Having this happen to me too, flying at night i have drifting like you are reporting. Have you found out anything further regarding it?
     
  8. mkaiser

    mkaiser Member

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    I tried to fly tonight and it was drifting as well... a few feet left and right and also elevation up and down on its own... no steady camera shot
     
  9. alexanderguelph

    alexanderguelph Well-Known Member

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    Try flying in similar conditions during the daytime and switching off the optical position sensors in the DJI go app. I was testing this recently. You will see it suddenly lose that precision we all have come to know and love about the Mavic. I fly at night a lot and it's still quite stable within a certain range but some vertical and horizontal drift will occur without enough light for it to see the ground.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  10. stratos

    stratos Well-Known Member

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    Im not that scared about flying but landing. Even if its dark I try to make sure that there is some light under the craft before landing, just to make sure the sensors get some visuak refence
     
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  11. Leeper

    Leeper New Member

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    Thanks for the information had the same experience flying just ten to twenty feet over my property. If you fly just at twilight and stay up as the light fads remarkably it does change the flight character of the Mavic.

    I would think in a well lit area this would return some more accurate control to the pilot. Has anybody done this test?
     
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  12. MavicPro

    MavicPro Well-Known Member

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    I just flew at night. Noticed the same drifting. 1-5 feet vertical drift, 2-3 feet horizontal drift.
    So this is normal behavior?
     
  13. Strafe1

    Strafe1 Well-Known Member

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    Probably not too far from normal, especially if a little breeze is there. I flew last night, and had about 6 in of vertical and horizontal movement, with almost no breeze.
     
  14. TTFullTimer

    TTFullTimer Well-Known Member

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    I may have to fly at night it is over 40 C here in Arizona. Limit of Mavic operation is 40 C. So I don't want to risk toasting a Mavic. Nights are much cooler.
     
  15. axoaxo

    axoaxo New Member

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    I experienced it too. Flying at night low level just for testing behaviour and had a minor crash (from 40cm height - no scratches!) because of sudden drifts difficult to control. Same behaviour also in the woods in low light conditions. In these environments/conditions it is definitely harder to control.
     
  16. jginnever

    jginnever Member

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    I just experienced this. Was trying to see if I could video some fireworks. The camera didn't seem to like the low light so I came back down. When I got about 1 foot from the original takeoff location it drifted to the right and crashed into my expensive gin drink. I don't think the Mavic is hurt too bad. At least one of the blades got badly nicked. I'm hoping the gimbal is ok as I didn't have the gimbal cover on it.

    One of the problems I think I may have had (it was just my 2nd drink) is that the landing site was a metal mesh table. The Mavic may have thought it was not a landable location. So it drifted off. But it didn't beep at me like it normally would. I also noticed on my way up that the Mavic seemed to drift every direction until I got about 40 feel high. Then it stabilized.
     
  17. cobra46

    cobra46 Well-Known Member

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    I filmed fireworks last weekend and got some pretty good shots using the settings from this video. I do suggest you figure out how to use manual focus prior to flying though.

     
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  18. jginnever

    jginnever Member

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    Wow there's a video for everything. Thanks for the tips. Maybe next year. Now to search for "when to change your blades". Looks like I nicked at least one pretty bad.
     
  19. Grey Wolf

    Grey Wolf Well-Known Member

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    Two points worth mentioning.
    Did you know it is illegal to both drink and fly as well as fly at night?
    Also. Filming fireworks is dangerous. I'm hoping you did it by staying away from the crowds and not flying over them, which again, is illegal everywhere!
     
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  20. dirkclod

    dirkclod Moderator
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    Ok your points were mentioned, thanks .
    Guy's lets get back on topic of the OP and we can post
    video's of what we get of fireworks in videos .
    Here's you one How often do you change your props?
    Also for you guy's in the fireworks here's a thread . Filming Fireworks on the 4th?
     
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